What is the Webster Technique?
Structural chiropractic care benefits all aspects of your body's ability to be healthy. This is accomplished by working with the Automatic Operating System (the communication system between your brain and body). Structural chiropractors work to correct spinal, pelvic and cranial shifts (aka structural dysfunctions). When dysfunctional, these structures create an imbalance in surrounding muscles and ligaments. Additionally, the resulting neurological degenerative strain may affect the body's ability to function optimally.
The Webster technique is a specific chiropractic analysis and corrective adjustment. The goal of the specific adjustment is to reduce the effects of pelvic displacements and sacral dysfunction. In doing so neuro-biomechanical function in the pelvis is improved.
Dr. Larry Webster, founder of the International Chiropractic Pediatric Association (ICPA) discovered this adjustment as a safe means to restore proper pelvic balance and function. This specific sacral analysis can be used on all weight bearing individuals to determine pelvic displacement and sacral dysfunction and is therefore applicable for the entire population. The assessment includes heel flexion to buttocks, with restricted flexion indicating the affected sacroiliac joint. Correction is made with a gentle and specific, sacral adjustment. It is used on all weight bearing individuals presenting with this biomechanical restriction. Common secondary conditions include (but are not limited to) low back pain, sciatic neuralgia, and symptoms associated with sacral dysfunction and/or pelvic displacement.
The ICPA recognizes that in a theoretical and clinical framework of the Webster technique in the care of pregnant women, sacral dysfunction may contribute to difficult labor for the mother (i.e., dystocia). Dystocia is caused by inadequate uterine function, pelvic contraction, and baby mal-presentation. The correction of sacral dysfunction may have a positive effect on all of these causes of dystocia.
In this clinical and theoretical framework, it is proposed that sacral displacement/dysfunction may contribute to these three primary causes of dystocia via uterine neurological strain, pelvic displacement and the tightening and torsion of specific pelvic muscles and ligaments. The resulting tense muscles and ligaments and their aberrant effect on the uterus may prevent the baby from comfortably assuming the best possible position for birth.
In regards to pregnant mothers, Dr. Webster reported that when a mother sought care and her baby was in a breech position, the restoration of pelvic neuro-biomechanics with this adjustment also frequently facilitated optimal fetal positioning. There are cases published in the chiropractic literature that support this theory. More research is needed and is currently underway by the ICPA.
Obstetric literature has determined the importance of normal pelvic neuro-biomechanics including uterine function and pelvic alignment for the prevention of dystocia (i.e., difficult birth). It has been also determined that correct positioning of the baby in-utero affects birth outcome and decreases the potential for undue stress to the baby's developing spine and nerve system. Chiropractic literature has determined the significance of corrective sacral adjustments in normalizing pelvic neuro-biomenchanics.
It is therefore considered prudent that this specific sacral analysis and corrective adjustment be used throughout pregnancy to detect and alleviate sacral imbalance and optimize pelvic neuro-biomechanics in the mother. Because of the particular female adaptations from the increase of hormones (mainly relaxin), weight gain and structural (i.e., posture) adaptations, pregnant mothers have a greater chance of sacral dysfunction and neuro-biomechanical imbalance than the general population. Additionally, because of the effect the corrective chiropractic adjustment has on all body functions by reducing neurological degenrative strain, pregnant mothers may have significant benefit by having their structure checked regularly throughout pregnancy, optimizing health benefits for both the mother and developing baby.
The ICPA offers classes of instruction and awards qualified attendees a Certificate of Proficiency in the Webster protocol. Only those doctors on their site maintain recognized certification status for the Webster protocol. Our office has been certified and continues to stay up-to-date with advancements in the technique. Let our highly qualified and experienced doctors help you during this precious time in your life!
Webster Research: icpa4kids.org/Chiropractic-Research/Webster-Technique/
Webster Technique History: icpa4kids.org/about/webster_technique_history.htm